Eagle County stalls on its rules for retail marijuana
EAGLE — Yesterday Eagle County Commissioners passed an ordinance temporarily banning retail marijuana operations in unincorporated parts of the county, allowing more time to figure out the rules for the budding industry.
Today, the planning and zoning commission has a meeting in the Eagle County Building at 3 p.m. to gather input on a draft amendment to its land use regulations, which would allow retail marijuana businesses to operate in certain zone districts within unincorporated Eagle County. The amendment is available for review online at http://www.eaglecounty.us/planning/active_land_use_applications or in person at the county’s Community Development Department, located at 500 Broadway in Eagle.
The passage of Amendment 64 by voters in November 2012 made legal the cultivation, possession and use of limited amounts of recreational marijuana by adults 21 years or older. To comply with state legislation, the county must act to either approve or prohibit the establishment of retail marijuana businesses within its jurisdiction.
The county was originally shooting to have its rules in place by now.
“We were trying to be ready to accept applications by then, but we were waiting on some regulations from the state and still have scheduling issues to work through,” Eagle County Attorney Bryan Treu said Sept. 17. “We might have been able to accomplish that, but we didn’t want to rush it.”
Treu said the temporary ban will give commissioners and planners time to review land use regulations.
The county’s proposed regulations would make marijuana businesses allowable within specified areas of the “commercial limited” and “commercial general zone” districts, which are the same areas approved in 2010 for medical marijuana businesses. Currently, there are four medical marijuana businesses operating within those areas.
The amendment is scheduled for consideration by three separate boards on the following dates:
Oct. 2 — Eagle County Planning Commission meeting, 3 p.m. at the Eagle County Building. The item is listed second on the agenda.
Oct. 3 — Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission meeting, 2:30 p.m. at the El Jebel Community Center. The retail marijuana amendment is the only item on the agenda.
Oct. 29 — Board of County Commissioners meeting, which begins at 10 a.m. at the Eagle County Building. The position of the item on the agenda is yet to be determined.
Interested community members are encouraged to attend any or all public hearings on the matter. Questions or written comments can be directed to Senior Planner Scot Hunn at email@example.com.
Tourism and outdoor recreation employ a lot of people, but those workers’ wages are below county and regional averages.